Motivation & Inspiration

Zoë Gray

February 1st,2019

Biography for CTV News

          I am a burn survivor that attends the Atlantic Burn Camp for burn injured children going on 10 years this summer. ABC helps burn with their physical and mental journey that you encounter after you have been burned. Going through the trauma of being burned can often make you feel like your lonely or the only one in the world with burn scars. The camp has helped me gain confidence in my scars. At camp we have burn survivors, firefighters, paramedics and the list goes on. But everyone there is so loving and caring and is there to help us kids grow and to be comfortable with our scars. At camp all of the counsellors and senior campers show the younger children how to embrace their scars and to not worry about what another think. Because ABC is such a lovely camp, you do not remember the tragic event that happened to you, let alone that you have scars. At camp no one judges you for being different, we are all people who share a pretty amazing thing, our scars! Everyone at ABC has an amazing story to share. Mine is that my four-wheeler caught fire when I was just 6 years old. Which left me with 40% of my body being burned. (that’s just the short quick story)

          Some of us suffer with self-esteem when realizing their scars to world around them. Camp helps us realize that we are not alone. For the longest time until I was about 11 I wouldn’t show my burns to anyone or even talk about them. Because I felt different and I did not like my scars. The day that my life changed, and I started to feel okay with my scars, I was swimming at the civic center with my father. I was wearing leggings under my bathing suit, and it was hard to swim so I took off my leggings… I don’t remember much but I do remember my father yelling to the life guard,’ she did it she is showing her burn scars”. Another thing that made me not like my scars was that, people used to stare and even though sometimes they still do stare, but it doesn’t bother me now. I believe that our burn scars make us who we are. By having such a loving camp to look forward to every year is amazing. By being comfortable with who I am as a burn survivor, I raised around $7000 to give back to ABC and say a huge thank you on behalf of myself and all the other burn survivors.

          Through the camp I was also able to go to Washington DC with other campers from all over Canada and the US to attend the International Association of Firefighters burn camp. I also had the opportunity of being the first Canadian to attend a winter camp in Portland Maine. I was also honored to attend a camp in Connecticut.

          We are not getting as much campers as we used to. So, if you or anyone you know has got burned by hot liquid, fire, gas…etc, no matter how big or small. Please contact the camp. No matter the age we would love to help.